Press-Telegram (Long Beach)

At least 15 are killed, 400 wounded in series of blasts

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OUAGADOUGO­U, BURKINA FASO » A series of explosions at a military barracks in Equatorial Guinea killed at least 15 people and wounded more than 400 others on Sunday, authoritie­s said.

State television TVGE read out a statement from President Teodoro Obiang Nguema which said the explosion was due to the “negligent handling of dynamite” in the military barracks located in the neighborho­od of Mondong Nkuantoma in Bata. He said that the explosion occurred at 4 p.m. local time. Equatorial Guinea, a tiny West African country of 1.3 million people located south of Cameroon, was a colony of Spain until it gained its independen­ce in 1968.

Health officials said that they believed there were people missing in buildings damaged by the blast.

There were some discrepanc­ies with the death toll, with TVGE reporting 20 dead, a Health Ministry tweet saying 17 were killed and the president’s statement mentioning 15.

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